Long-time U.S Paralympic athlete and American Record Holder Michael DeMarco recently announced his retirement. DeMarco, a San Diegan, is a familiar face on the pool deck at Para meets across the country and is known as one of the more encouraging and inspiring athletes in the sport.
He has forged a very long and successful career in swimming, with cerebral palsy classifying him to compete as S3, along with SB2 for breaststroke and SM3 for the individual medley. DeMarco’s final competition was the 2016 U.S. Paralympic Trials in Charlotte recently, where he was the lone competitor in the 50 breast, 50 free, 50 back and 150 IM for his classification, which is one of the more severely disabled classes contested.
After missing out on one of the 10 men’s spots for the Team USA roster heading to Rio, DeMarco posted on facebook: “It comes with a heavy heart to post this. After 21 years of competitive swimming, 17 at the Paralympic level, I have decided to retire.” It is apparent that DeMarco is loved and respected within the para swimming community as many of the comments left on the U.S. Paralympics Swimming facebook page credit him with personal inspiration.
DeMarco’s first international medal was bronze for the 50 meter breaststroke at the 2004 Paralympic Games. Since then he has been a part of Team USA for the 2008 and 2012 Paralympic Games squads, and has earned bronze medals at both the 2006 and 2010 IPC World Championships. He currently holds 13 short course and 13 long course American Records and is also a member of two American Record holding relay squads.
Play! It is an essential part of all children's development. Play is how children learn to socialize, to think, to solve problems, to mature and most importantly, to have fun. Play connects children with their imagination, their environment, their family and the world.
UCP just received two grants to purchase adaptive toys for our popular Toy Library. Adaptive toys are designed with easy to push buttons, switches, lights, music, and vibration. Their unique design is the perfect way for children with cerebral palsy and other disabilities to experience the joy of play.
Adaptive toys range in price from $80 to as much as $450. Having them available for loan provides children an opportunity to play with specialized toys without the costly purchase. With the generous support of the San Diego Lion's Club and the San Diego County Employees' Charitable Organization, UCP was able to add even more adaptive toys to our library.
Here are some of the latest comments from families who checked out some of the amazing toys we have available:
"My daughter is really enjoying the switch toys. They have helped her discover cause and effect."
"Our son loves toys that make sounds and are interactive. These toys stimulate his cognitive skills and creativity."
"The switch activated toys are amazing! I'd never have been able to expose our daughter to these without the Toy Library."
Click here for more information on UCP's Toy Library.
United Cerebral Palsy is pleased to announce that its “Life Without Limits” awards tribute dinner honoring President and CEO of Sharp HealthCare, Michael W. Murphy as the “HealthCare Leader of the Year,” was a rousing success.
The event, held on May 4th at the Marriott Marquis Hotel and Marina in downtown San Diego, saw over 300 people in attendance and helped raise over $120,000.
The Association would like to thank the following sponsors for their support of the event: the McBeth Foundation, Rady Children’s Hospital Foundation, The Corky McMillin Companies, Emerald Textiles and Generations Healthcare.
Funds raised from the evening will be put to use immediately to help fund numerous ongoing program services that UCP provides for local citizens with cerebral palsy and other disabilities and their families throughout San Diego County.
UCP San Diego Executive Director David Carucci was recently named the national “Executive Director of the Year” for the United Cerebral Palsy Association during the national agency’s annual meeting in Las Vegas.
This year marks the 43rd year of service by Carucci with UCP, the last 18 years as its executive director, for an agency whose mission is to advance the independence, productivity and full citizenship of people affected by cerebral palsy and other disabilities. In pursuing its mission, UCP’s main focus is to find ways to include individuals with disabilities into every aspect of life and areas of society, including the home, the school, the workplace, and the community, regardless of severity of disability.
“It’s nice to be recognized by one’s peers, said Carucci, but I owe it all to the hard-working and inspirational clients that we serve daily and their families and our dedicated and talented staff, board of directors and countless volunteers here in San Diego County.” He added, “I am humbled to be included in a group of leading professionals who received the award before me and it is certainly special to receive this award named in remembrance for Kathleen Maul, a UCP Executive Director who passed away prematurely. She certainly epitomized the spirit of dedication, innovation and leadership.”
Carucci, a long-time Poway resident, oversees program services for over 150 people daily and over 8,000 annually, throughout the community and 2 program sites in San Diego (Kearny Mesa) and Escondido. Services offered include: adult occupational skill training, supported employment services, tailored day services that support youth with disabilities in an actual college experience, a toy and software lending library and respite. Also offered is an assistive technology center including augmentative communication devices and adaptive computer technology, computer recycling, disability awareness training, funding assistance and an extensive information and referral service regarding cerebral palsy and the many community resources available to people with disabilities of all ages.
In addition to a number of annual fundraising events, UCP also operates 3 thrift stores located in Pacific Beach, mid-city San Diego and Chula Vista in an effort to raise needed funds.
UCP of San Diego County is a non-profit 501 c (3) corporation and has provided programs and services in San Diego County since 1958. The local affiliate is part of an 80 member network across the United States. Locally, over 65% of the people the agency serves have disabilities other than cerebral palsy.
At work, it's what people CAN do that matters.
United Cerebral Palsy of San Diego County is proud to partner with The U.S. Department of Labor to launch a new public service announcement as part of the Campaign for Disability Employment. The campaign encourages employers to look beyond individual disabilities to the potential in each candidate.
“Who I Am” features our Celebrity Ambassador, actor R. J. Mitte, along with eight other people from all walks of life. Mitte, featured in the hit series “Breaking Bad," has cerebral palsy.
Rather than being defined solely by their disability, each of these individuals is the sum of their many life roles—which includes working in jobs they love.
The Campaign for Disability Employment is a collaborative effort to promote positive employment outcomes for people with disabilities by encouraging employers and others to recognize the value and talent they bring to the workplace.
UCP partners with San Diego County employers to offer jobs to people with disabilities. If you have a job available, call us at (858) 571-7803 or contact David Drazenovich (San Diego) at email@example.com or Gill Hennessey (North County) at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our mission is to advance the independence, productivity and full citizenship of people affected by cerebral palsy and other disabilities.
Thank you for supporting United Cerebral Palsy and the individuals and families we serve on a daily basis.
Your support funds programs for both children and adults with disabilities, including access to educational toys, communication devices, work skills training and job placement — and much more!
It all leads to a more independent lifestyle — a life without limits for people with disabilities.
Here's a look back at some of our 2015 events.
There were plenty of belly laughs for everyone at the 1st Annual UCP Comedy Night on March 13th at The Comedy Palace and the event raised $6,500 for United Cerebral Palsy of San Diego County.
UCP is grateful to comedians Russ T. Nailz, Zoltan and Matin Atrushi, special guest Susan DeVincent, the management and staff of The Comedy Palace and a fantastic audience for making the night a huge success!
Thanks to the Beach and Country Guild, the 3rd Annual Regale in the Ranch was a huge success.
After a great season, coming in a close second in the NPSFL Championship game, Enforcers representatives, John (L) and Brianne (C) Buckley present a check for $12,000 to UCP’s Director of Fund Development/Marketing, (R) Marc Carucci at their post-season awards dinner on Saturday, July 11.
The Enforcers continue to be champions in everyone’s book at UCP. Our thanks to the Board, Players, Coaches, Dance Team and their fans for another great year!
The San Diego Enforcers Public Safety Football Team, composed of firefighters, paramedics and law enforcement personnel, competes against other public safety football teams across the country to raise money for their chosen charities.
The 33rd Annual UCP Golf Classic took place on Monday, August 17th at The El Camino Country Club. Golfers hit the links in bright sunshine and did their best to conquer a challenging course, while raising $60,000 for United Cerebral Palsy of San Diego County.
For the 32nd consecutive year, San Diego City Fire Fighters graciously donated their financial support as “Title Sponsor “ of the always-wild and crazy Fire Fighters and Friends “Celebrity Waiters Luncheon” benefiting UCP.
This year’s edition was held on a very sunny work day
in late September and patrons were treated to gourmet food, local and Hollywood stars and the high
energy of San Diego City Fire Fighters — all bayside at the Coronado Island Marriott Resort & Spa.
The 33rd Annual 5K No Limits Walk, held at De Anza Cove on Saturday, October 17, was a great day of music, food, fun & friends — and a resounding success!
Walkers enjoyed a continental breakfast, arts & crafts, face-painting and other activities followed by the 5K and topped off with a delicious lunch from Casa SolyMar and Casa De Bandini. All while helping raise funds for United Cerebral Palsy through raffle and incentive prizes like passes for four to Disneyland.
The day was also filled with many colorful t-shirts, as team walkers went the distance to support their children with disabilities.
Zachary Adler has cerebral palsy, but that doesn't stop him from holding a job, volunteering in the community and enjoying a round of golf.
A participant in UCP's Networks program, he played in our 33rd Annual Golf Classic on August 17th at the El Camino Country Club.
Marc Carucci, UCP San Diego's Director of Fund Development and Public Relations said, “Zach’s positive attitude, his sense of humor, his love of sports and his desire to enjoy a full life make him an individual that best represents UCP’s vision of a life without limits.”
Read Zach's story in the San Diego Union-Tribune, reported by the U-T's Pam Kragen and photographed by Charlie Newman.
AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support United Cerebral Palsy of San Diego County every time you shop, at no cost to you.
When you shop at smile.amazon.com, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as Amazon.com, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to UCP.
To shop at AmazonSmile simply click here from the web browser on your computer or mobile device. You may also want to add a bookmark to AmazonSmile to make it even easier to return and start your shopping.
Tens of millions of products on AmazonSmile are eligible for donations. You will see eligible products marked “Eligible for AmazonSmile donation” on their product detail pages.
You use the same account on Amazon.com and AmazonSmile. Your shopping cart, Wish List, wedding or baby registry, and other account settings are also the same.
Click Here to start shopping. Please tell your friends and family about this easy (and free) way to support UCP San Diego.
Clean out that junk drawer and help United Cerebral Palsy of San Diego County at the same time. UCP has partnered with SecondWave Recycling to provide you with an EASY and FREE way to donate your old cell phones, PDAs and tablets.
SecondWave Recycling is an environmentally and socially responsible organization that partners with non-profits to support their fundraising efforts. Old phones may seem useless but they contain valuable, renewable materials that can be used in the next generation of phones.
You can drop off your old cell phones, PDAs and tablets at a UCP Thrift Store in City Heights, Pacific Beach or Chula Vista. You can also click here to print a free USPS pre-paid shipping label or request a free pre-paid envelope. Be sure to type in "UCP" as your charity.
Properly disposing of your old devices will keep them out of landfills and help people with cerebral palsy and other disabilities by funding UCP's programs and services.
Your dollars make a huge difference in the lives of people with Cerebral Palsy and other disabilities.
to our thrift stores in Pacific Beach, City Heights and Chula Vista.
DONATE YOUR TIME
Our success depends on the skills, talents, time and energy of our many volunteers.
The 34th Annual UCP Golf Classic
El Camino Country Club. Lunch, greens fees, cart, refreshments, tee prizes, awards and dinner included. Click here for info and registration.
Steptember is an exciting 4-week team activity that can improve your health, fitness and well-being, while raising funds for people with disabilities. Click here to sign up.
Small Change Makes A Big Difference
Look for our coin canisters at your favorite Coco’s, Carrow’s and Original Pancake House locations.
UCP Thrift Stores offer a unique shopping experience for our customers. We offer gently used products from vintage clothing and accessories to everyday fashions, household items, furniture, and antiques.
Our stores are conveniently located in Pacific Beach, City Heights and Chula Vista.
Serving San Diego County since 1983, Precision Assembly is a unique business that can help with your bulk mail and assembly needs.
A division of United Cerebral Palsy of San Diego County, Precision Assembly offers quality service to customers and training and employment opportunities for people with disabilities.
The team of instructors and physically-challenged employees are dedicated to putting your needs first.
Ready Stamps is a unique full service business that can help with stamps, engraving and printing needs.
A division of United Cerebral Palsy of San Diego County, Ready Stamps has been providing job training and employment for persons with disabilities since 1982.
As a manufacturer, we can provide quicker, more reliable service at a better price than those who are simply "supplying" marking devices.